The United States (U.S.) is an attractive large market to any investors in the world. Besides, the U.S. is a highly developed country with many good social welfare policies and it is also considered an ideal place for many global citizens who desire to settle permanently. The U.S. government has offered special policies to attract the international investors to do business and live here including EB-5 program. This program has received a very great interest by international entrepreneurs in countries including Vietnam.
In 2015, there were 224 visas issued to Vietnamese through the EB-5 program and this number was only ranked the second behind China under this program. To help readers more clearly understand about investment and residence opportunities in the U.S. through the programs of the U.S. government; an interview has been conducted by a reporter of Investment and Brand (I&B) to Mr. Chris Loc Dao, Chairman of the U.S. Investment Services (USIS). Having experienced seven years of operation in Vietnam, USIS is a leading company specializing in consultation of the EB-5 program with a 100 percent success rate until now.
I&B: It is known that you have a very successful business in the US, however what is the reason affecting you to decide to return Vietnam and establish USIS in 2008?
Mr. Chris Loc Dao: I have more than 25 years of experience in living, studying, corporate governance and investment in the U.S.. Therefore, I have the opportunity to meet many remarkably successful Vietnamese here. Where are they? They are businesses, experts, scientists, politicians, governmental advisors. Despite having landed in the U.S. under different conditions and environments, they have bare hands with fiercely successful aspiration in common when coming here.
I am very proud of this and always hope more and more young Vietnamese to succeed in the U.S. and around the world. It is my thoughtfulness that a prosperous country needs to possess a young generation who has capability and intellectuality. I have a dream which is that our Vietnamese people and our Vietnamese nation have their own voice on international political map as well as global trading market. It is the reason why I decided to establish the USIS which has mission to contribute to form a new talented Vietnamese young generation who can be compared to the counterparts in the world. To implement successfully the mission, we have constantly considered successes of our customers as the success of USIS.
Many people are interested in the business investment programs in the U.S. not only for new business opportunities but also for long-term settlement opportunities here including the EB-5 program of the US government. As a company implementing this program in Vietnam, can you tell more about the EB-5?
Mr. Chris Loc Dao: The EB-5 is a program to apply for a green card in the US in the form of capital investment in projects executed in the US. This is the safest and fastest form for foreign citizens who want to settle in the US. This program was initiated by the U.S. government in 1990 which has allowed the projects located in regions of investment incentives to attract the investment capital from many countries on over the world and generate jobs for its local people.
What are specific benefits for the investors when they participate in the EB-5 program?
Mr. Chris Loc Dao: The investors and their families will be granted the permanent green card and are entitled to benefits as a U.S. citizen except the right to vote and being recognized as a dual nationality. Their children will receive a modern, quality education like free school fee to a high school and low fee for undergraduate and graduate system. Also, the investment capital after a profitable business period will be refunded (usually after 4-6 years) along with a profit part from the investment project.
What should eligibility requirements be met by the investors to get the benefits from the EB-5 program?
Mr. Chris Loc Dao: The investors only need to prove to own USD 500,000 for the investment to be considered as legitimate eligibility. The legitimate income sources are personal income, bonuses, business profits, real estate, securities, giving and inheritance, etc.. The investors are not required to show their business and management experience or qualification, language or age , etc..
How long does U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) approve the EB-5 records and are there any cases to be refused?
Mr. Chris Loc Dao: It is often about 2 years. The records which lack documents proving the legitimate financial resources will be returned.
With more than 25 years of experience in business management and investment consultancy in the U.S. market, in your opinions what the most factors should be cared by the investors to participate the EB-5 program and obtain the green card?
Mr. Chris Loc Dao: I think the EB-5 investment is an extremely important decision for the investors. It is concerned to not only the large investment capital but also the future of their families. Therefore, to succeed in the EB-5 records, it is the most important to choose the right consulting firm.
An experienced consulting firm will give the best support to the customers during the project selection and preparation of records. First of all, the consulting firm shall have a good understanding of the U.S. market to evaluate, appraise the projects to introduce the investors. The consulting firm shall also have a rich experience in consulting the customers to prepare the records and avoid the errors causing the refusal. Also, the consulting firm shall have experience in supporting the customers to prove their finance. These are core issues of the program
And, the consulting firm shall have a close relationship with law firms and project agencies in the U.S. to guide the investors to visit, understand the projects. Thereby, the investors will have a comprehensive view of the projects to give the most suitable and feasible choice.
What do you think how to choose a reputable consulting firm for investors to gain fully trust?
Mr. Chris Loc Dao:I highly appreciate some consulting firms in Vietnam because they put customers' interest first. It is quite simple to choose a reputable and minded consulting unit. Ask them questions as follows: Firstly, how long is their experience period in EB-5? Secondly, how much are proven successful records? (see acceptable letter from USIS). Thirdly, can we be arranged to meet the successful customers in reality?
Finally, how is about their after-sale policies? Can they become the companion or not? A good consulting firm is a firm which can analyze the customers to understand not only the strengths of investment projects but also other risks that may occur. Also, it can accompany to the customers in the U.S. after the entry.
And how is about solutions for these above questions to USIS?
Mr. Chris Loc Dao: The USIS has seven years of experience in consulting the EB-5 program and personally, I have 25 years of experince in the business management and investment consultancy in the U.S. market. The success probability of recods performed by USIS is 100% and we can be confident to commit to the customers that their records will be accepted or we will refund 100%.
In our business philosophy, the investors are the most important one with a single reason which is that their success is our success. Protecting the customers' interests is also to protect our rights and reputation because more than anyone else, we understand that in this special investment consulting field, we have nothing to sell to the customers other than TRUST to them and CONFIDENCE from them to us.
Selecting a safely and effective project will determine the ability to obtain the long-term green card for the investors. Can you share experience in choosing the field and project to invest which USIS introduces to the investors?
Mr. Chris Loc Dao: We have a team of economic experts, lawyers with good knowledge about immigration and investment law in the US. They evaluate and recommend us to the projects which they think are safe and feasible. Then, I directly come to the United States to meet the project leaders and learn them very carefully from their personalities, facilities, staffs, employees, completed projects as well as evaluate the effectiveness of previous projects. When I truly believe to the project partners, I introduce them to my customers. It can spend some months to learn, evaluate the project partners.
Many investors are concerned as they have never landed in the U.S. or not had any relations and relatives in the U.S.. How will USIS support the investors? What are after-sale policies of USIS after the investors’ family immigrate into the U.S.?
USIS has its office in the U.S. and will accompany with its customers to handle necessary procedures to ascertain that the investors’ family turns to have a stable life in the soonest time. We support the investors from leasing, buying house to registering school for their children, health care insurance, learning English, driving car, etc.. Our experts will continue consulting about policies of taxation, finance, business investment to generate their monthly incomes.
To consult the investors in the EB-5 program, what partners in the U.S. has the USIS cooperated with?
Mr. Chris Loc Dao: Our strategic partners are Greenberg Traurig - 7th largest law firm in the U.S.; CMB - a pioneering and leading company in the U.S. on the EB-5; Mercan Group - a company with over 25 years of experience in the immigration service in the U.S., Canada and Europe. Together with these partners, we have supported many families to invest and settle successfully and stably in the US.
Known that USIS has just established a subsidiary company namely USIS Consulting. Can you please share its scopes of activities?
Mr. Chris Loc Dao: TPP will take effect in 2018 and Vietnamese enterprises need to have good preparations immediately so as to integrate into the international playing field. The main purpose of USIS Consulting aims to support the Vietnamese businesses about training of necessary knowledge to promote trade into the U.S. market, helping establish affiliates or branches or transferring their experts to work in the U.S.. Besides, the USIS Consulting also consults other sectors including the U.S. policies of taxation, finance, real estate, business investment.
After nearly 7 years of directly consulting for the Vietnamese investors, do your think what are the most things cared by the investors and can you please give the reasons?
Mr. Chris Loc Dao: For the individual issue, the investors are more interested in choosing a good school for their children and what are the benefits from the green card. They also are interested in business opportunities to give the income. About the project, two main things are interested: long-term green card and payback.
We can say the standard of living in the U.S. is higher than other countries in the world with so high-quality educational, cultural, social, health policies and brings the highest comfort for people. Therefore, the long-term residence in the U.S. remains the desire of many people.
For the economic field, the U.S. is still the most prosperous country in the world. Its growth rate is more stable and faster than European countries. So, for those with passion of business, the US market has not ever ended its attraction with numerous investment projects to attract the investors around the world.
The USIS has a lot of market information, projects, opportunities and experience of business investment in the U.S. and therefore, we will support effectively to Vietnamese investors with the desire to invest and obtain permanent residence in the U.S..
NGOC MY (I&B)